Page last updated at 17:25 GMT, Monday, 6 October 2008 18:25 UK

Brain surgery boy out of hospital

Alex Barnes with his mother Ros
Alex's proton therapy can begin when he is strong enough

A Leicestershire boy who travelled to Florida for innovative medical treatment has been discharged from hospital after brain surgery.

Four-year-old Alex Barnes left hospital on Monday and was staying with relatives who live locally.

He underwent six hours of surgery to remove a pea-sized tumour.

Doctors in America said when Alex is strong enough he will begin a daily course of proton therapy - an advanced form of radiotherapy.

Daily treatment

His mother Ros said: "It takes a long time for the body to heal, so I'm trying to get him to sleep as much as possible because that's the best way to heal."

The operation was performed at the Wolfson Children's Hospital in Jacksonville and a number of other hospitals will be involved in his treatment.

She added: "As soon as I drove up to that hospital and I started to talk to people, I felt I did the right thing. They were waiting for us, they had a team to look after Alex. They're so professional."

But Alex's grandparents, who live in Florida, said they feared his ordeal was just beginning.

Grandfather Bill Malehorn said: "With the proton therapy they have to sedate [Alex] each and every time which is not a pleasant thing.

"It'll be every day - Monday through Friday. And sometimes, depending on the situation, it might be twice a day."

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Alex Barnes has come out of intensive care




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